The William Leon Carter Award is the highest category of achievement given in the Chicago's Finest Awards. Named after my grandfather William Leon Carter, this Windy award goes to the individual who contributes to not only their professional teams but also to the community. This also awards players who show hard work and dedication.
William "Big Red" Leon Carter was a man dedicated to his family and others, a hard, blue collar worker for Staley's ( Original home of the Chicago Bears) in Decatur, IL for forty years. He dedicated his time to his family and to others. He was a man of men and a great role model to alot of people that passed through his life teaching sports, fishing, boxing, leadership, maturity, philanthropy and faith.
William served in World War II for the United States Navy and upon his return, he reunited and later married his childhood sweetheart, Delores Marie Carter.
For that I bestow the name of this award on the behalf of William "Big Red" Leon Carter. May your memory live on through this award, those who receive it, and those who were affected by your wisdom and kindness.
Here are your nominees:
Israel Idonije - Chicago Bears - Defensive End
Israel "Izzy" Idonije has played in 102 out of a possible 112 games for the Chicago Bears since he was signed as an undrafted free agent from the Cleveland Browns waivers in 2004. Israel had to prove himself since becoming a Bear, unable to land a starting spot on defense, Izzy rotated in to perfection averaging 18 tackles, and 2.3 sacks a season without starting until 2010.
Last season Israel showed how dominant he could be when given the opportunity. With the acquisition of Julius Peppers and the release of Adewale Ogunleye, the position was all Izzy's for the taking. And Idonije seized the chance with his best season thus far, Izzy put up 8 sacks, 34 tackles, and 4 forced fumbles. More importantly was Izzy's help opposite Peppers, who often saw double and triple teams, leaving Idonije free to take one on one matchups and create pressure and stops. He did just that.
IIF ( Israel Idonije Foundation )
Helping comes as second nature to Israel, raised in a family of humilty and benevolence, Israel committed himself early on to change in his community and others. He eventually started the IIF ( Israel Idonije Foundation ), a registered 501(c)3 non-for-profit organzation.
The IIF exists to extend positive, life changing, opportunities to families and individuals in economically disadvantaged communities. The foundation promotes the pursuit of education and knowledge, while providing programs for youth and community members, in hopes that they may actually realize and maximize their full potential.
Ryan Dempster - Chicago Cubs - Pitcher
Ryan Dempster hails from Sechelt, British Columbia, the 34yr old right hander has played in over 348 games for the Chicago Cubs, signed by the ballclub in 2004, Dempster was on his way to becoming one of the Cubs most coveted closers, posting 33,24,28 saves in his first three seasons assuming that role.
Ryan then made the transition from reliever to starter, a move not many major league players make with success. In Dempster's first season as starter for the Cubs he went 17-6, with 187 strikeouts and a 2.96ERA. Dempster was undoubtedly one of the Cubs top pitchers in the teams rotation.
Since joining the Cubs starting pitching rotation, Dempster is 52-35 with an ERA of 3.74 and 701 strikeouts. His perseverance and production for the Cubs the years and and strong character display earned Dempster an Opening Day start this past season for his first time as a Cub.
But more important than any Major League Baseball accomplishment he could ever receive, a passion closest to Ryan Dempster's heart is his progress in spreading awareness and research developments when it comes to the Velo-cardio-facial syndrome (VCFS), 22q11 deletion syndrome.
According to the Dempster Family Foundation website, 22q11 deletion is described as:
"22q11.2 Deletion Syndrome (DiGeorge Syndrome/VCFS) is a chromosomal abnormality that can cause a wide range of health and developmental issues, including heart defects, breathing issues, problems with the gastrointestinal tract, immune and endocrine systems, differences in the palate, slow growth, and autism and/or developmental delays or learning disabilities in some individuals. Children with this condition may have many or only a few of the symptoms, with varying severity. Physicians with expertise in this condition can quickly recognize the diagnosis in some patients and take steps to improve their quality of life, but in other children and adults it is not as straightforward.*"
In June 2009, Dempster announced that his daughter Riley, had 22q11 deletion, known as DiGeorge syndrome. He then started the Dempster Family Foundation, dedicated to raising awareness of 22q11 deletion and reaching out to families with children with the disorder and the charities that support them, to help them deal with difficult situations they face each day.
Or go to http://dempsterfamilyfoundation.org/
Tags: Adewale Ogunleye, Alvin Eugene Carter, Boxing, Chicago Bears, Chicago Cubs, Chicago's Finest Awards, Cleveland Browns, Decatur IL, Delores Marie Carter, Dempster Family Foundation, Fishing, IIF, Israel Idonije, Israel Idonije Foundation, Julius Peppers, Kathretta Flagg, Major League Baseball, Rollin ACE Apparel, Rollin Aces, Ryan Dempster, Staleys, United States Navy, William Leon Carter, World War II