Jim Emig Coach AwardPete HoffmanFormer Softball Coach at Collinsville High School and Co-Founder of Collinsville Extreme Club
Pete Hoffman is a longtime baseball and softball coach, volunteer and co-founder of the Collinsville Extreme Club. For 32 years he has coached and mentored boys and girls at all levels from recreational to high school to select. He had a major impact on sports at Collinsville High School as the JV coach from 1997-2000 and the Varsity Coach from 1999-2007 and led the team to its first regional championship in school history. Collinsville made incredible strides under Pete’s leadership and the number of girls playing and wanting to play softball in Collinsville significantly increased. He also developed the "INAM Award" (It's Not About Me) during his tenure as head coach to help change the culture in the program to be about team and not individualism.
Off the field he supported the sports he loved by volunteering in many roles. He was a Board Member for Collinsville Baseball Softball League for many years and directed coaches clinics to help volunteer coaches. He still volunteers annually to lead complex clean-up days in the Collinsville Sports Complex and is the public announcer during the varsity softball games.
In 1999 he co-founded the Collinsville Extreme Club. Has coached girls softball teams at all levels of the organization from 8U through 18U and just finished coaching a 10U softball team in 2016. He is retiring from coaching this year. Pete developed the Tom Matysik Foundation in memory of a long-term Extreme Board member to assist in raising funds for families that cannot afford sports extracurricular activities. He also led the Adopt-a-Family program that over the past few years has specifically adopted families in Fairmont City and raised money and donations for them in the form of grocery gift cards, clothes, toys, and other items.
Cathy Hill Volunteer AwardJohn SuessVolunteer Trainer, Jackie Joyner-Kersee Soccer Program
John Suess has devoted decades as a volunteer coach and trainer, mentoring youth through the sport of soccer. Most recently, he has been the lead trainer for the Jackie Joyner-Kersee Soccer program, which is in its fourth year. At some points, he was the only trainer, but has worked to develop staff and parents to take on coaching roles. With the Bob Emig Foundation, he has helped create a network of elite trainers to develop the soccer skills of the JJK youth players.
John started volunteering as a coach when he was in high school, helping with recreational teams and a YMCA camp. He built his credentials as a stellar player in high school and college. He was a four-year Varsity soccer player at Triad High School and for years held the record for most goals in a season (broken by Todd Bruns) and still holds the record for most goals and assists. At McKendree University he was an NAIA Academic All American.
In 1990 he started coaching the Boys 1981 Select Downtown Imprints Soccer Club, one of the winningest teams in its age group in the Metro-East. He spent 10 years as head coach, despite not having a child involved. When his own children started soccer, he began a string of a15 years as a volunteer coach in recreational and select leagues.
Todd Bruns Athlete AwardEllie and Abigail CrabtreeSoccer Players and Founder of Sisterhood of Soccer
Sisters Ellie and Abby Crabtree are role models for youth soccer players on and off the field. Ellie, a freshman at Illinois Wesleyan in Bloomington, IL, and Abby, a senior at Edwardsville High School, played high school varsity soccer for four years and have exceled on their select team since they were 7 and 8.
Both have received many honors during their high school careers. Most recently, Abby was named to the Illinois High School Soccer Coaches Association 2016 All-State Girls Soccer Team, an honor she also received as a freshman. She has been Edwardsville’s highest scorer for three years.
Ellie, a defensive player, is on scholarship at Illinois Wesleyan and has started and played in all games in her freshman year.
Off the field, the sisters, inspired by their dad’s focus on helping others—turned an idea into reality in 2013 when they started the Sisterhood of Soccer (SOS), which is all about making a difference in the lives of girls through the sport of soccer. They recruited other girls who play on their select soccer team to be camp coaches.
They have held and participated in a number of camps at the Jackie Joyner-Kersee Center. “We wanted to share our experiences and help girls develop not only soccer skills, but also life skills,” says Abby. “We hope to connect with the girls and be like big sisters to them.”
The soccer experience let to other visits to the girls at the center and keeping in touch with emails, talking not just about soccer but also school work. The Sisterhood of Soccer hopes to expand its efforts as a new program of the Bob Emig Foundation.
Bob Emig Supporter AwardRick KeefeFormer Coach and Athletic Director, Waterloo High School
Rick Keefe, retired athletic director at Waterloo High School, has a storied career as a volunteer, coach and athlete. He was a stellar high school and college athlete and took his knowledge of sports and life and shared it with youth in a number of sports and other activities throughout his life.
He was named to the Waterloo High School Hall of Fame after a long career that included adding wrestling, fishing and girls soccer programs. He also held a variety of coaching positions in the basketball, soccer and softball programs. In addition, he started a chapter of Fellowship of Christian Athletes and is a Fellow himself.
In addition, he spent hours as a volunteer. He participated in the Waterloo Sports Association for 25 years, coaching, volunteering with umpiring, raising money for the teams and hosting tournaments, and also ran the Special Olympics Soccer program for two years.
At Althoff Catholic High School he earned 10 Varsity letters and was the starting quarterback his junior and senior years. He was a starter on the varsity basketball and baseball teams his sophomore, junior and senior years.
Rick was part of what was called "The Magnificent Seven" his senior year when the basketball team won the Bi-State Conference and the Regional Championship, losing to Collinsville, which went to State, in the Sectional. Many team members, including Rick, were awarded athletic scholarships to various colleges. Rick attended St. Mary's in San Antonio, Texas his freshman year on a basketball scholarship. He finished at SIUE on a baseball scholarship, where he was All Regional Third Baseman his junior year and NCAA qualifier his senior year, playing for one of SIUE’s most successful teams.
He played in the MonClair Baseball League for 30 years, was on the All-Star teams numerous years and was inducted into the MontClair Hall of Fame and the MetroEast Amateur Baseball Hall of Fame.