NFF Announces 2005 Chapter Leadership Award Winners
MORRISTOWN, N.J., Oct. 25, 2005 – From its nationwide network of
119 chapters and 10,000 members, The National Football
Foundation & College
Hall of Fame (NFF) announced today the selection
of four dedicated individuals as recipients of the
2005 Chapter Leadership Awards.
The 2005 Chapter
Leadership Award Recipients are:
- Carl Barzilauskas – Midwest Region – Central Indiana
- Emo DiNitto – East Region – Rhode Island Chapter
- Walter W. Hunt II – West Region – King County
- Tony Sardisco – South Region – S.M. McNaughton (Shreveport,
The Chapter Leadership Awards annually recognize four individuals,
one from each region, for their commitment, generosity and leadership
at the local level. The NFF Chapter Leadership Award winners have dedicated
themselves to fulfilling the Foundation’s mission of promoting the
game of amateur football and its benefits to America’s youth. From
scholar-athlete banquets to youth coaching academies, each of these honorees
leads a devoted effort to touch the lives of countless youth, high school
and collegiate football players.
“These four honorees are emblematic of the efforts by all our
chapter presidents to maintain a strong presence in promoting the ideals
of amateur football in their communities,” said NFF President Steve
Hatchell. “The success of our chapter network could not survive
without the commitment displayed by individuals such as these four.”
The 119 NFF chapters annually recognize close to 3,000 scholar-athletes
and award more than $750,000 in scholarships to high school and college
scholar-athletes. These honorees have spearheaded their chapter’s
efforts in selecting the recipients of these awards, securing funding
for future scholarships, and impacting the lives of many in their areas.
These four recipients will be honored as part of the NFF Annual Awards
Luncheon on December 6, 2005, at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City.
Later that evening, they will be recognized before a capacity crowd of
1,500 during the NFF’s 48th Annual Awards Dinner. The Dinner marks
the official induction of 13 college football legends into the College
Football Hall of Fame. In addition, the NFF will honor 16 college seniors
with National Scholar-Athlete Awards and will present the nation’s
top football scholar-athlete with the Draddy Trophy presented by HealthSouth.
For more information on these events, please visit www.footballfoundation.com.
Walter W. Hunt II - West Region
Since taking over as president of the NFF’s King County Chapter seven years ago, Walter W. Hunt II has provided the proper balance of
aggressiveness and foresight in reaching into his past accomplishments
to spur the chapter’s growth in numbers, programs and significance.
As a fullback on the University of Washington Huskies for four years,
Hunt enjoyed success on both the individual and team levels. He received
the “Most Improved Player” award following his junior season
in 1983, and played a prominent role in the Huskies 1984 season that saw
them finish 11-1 and #2 in the nation, following a victory over Oklahoma
in the Orange Bowl.
Hunt remained active in the Washington football landscape after his
playing days, coaching at several different high schools before a seven-years
stint with the University of Puget Sound. In 1991, Hunt coordinated the
South Seattle Youth Football Camp attended by more than 200 youth players.
He joined the board of the NFF’s King County Chapter in 1992, and
after eight years, became the chapter president in 1998.
Since then, Hunt has spearheaded an aggressive campaign to establish
the chapter’s identity more prominently in the local community and
impact a greater number of football players. The chapter has increased
the scholarship money it awards to local high school football players
from $2,000 annually to more than $7,000. The NFL/NFF Coaching Academy,
held each year at the home of the NFL’s Seattle Seahawks, attracts
a capacity crowd of 150 local coaches who learn the finer points of coaching
the game at the youth and high school levels. In addition, Hunt played
a critical role in brining the NFF’s Play It Smart program to two
local high schools, Chief Sealth and Rainier Beach High Schools, and plans
to lead an effort to increase the program’s reach in the Seattle
“Walt has a distinguished background in the community, and he’s
used that with a high energy level and commitment for the NFF to take
the King County to new heights in their local community,” said Bob
Keropian, NFF West Region Coordinator. “He’s connected with
the key members of the local football community, and rallied an amazing
amount of support for the chapter and the programs they run on an annual
Leveraging relationships with both the Seahawks and the Seattle Bowl,
Hunt created new opportunities for his chapter to raise money to support
amateur football in the local community. Additionally, the chapter’s
newly introduced golf tournament funnels dozens of new members into their
ranks, helping increase attendance at the chapter’s scholar-athlete
banquet that now annually attracts more than 500 people.
“We’ve been aggressive in not only attracting new members
but retaining the ones currently within our chapter roster,” Hunt
said. “It’s important to remind our members about the benefits
of joining and renewing and I think we’ve been very successful with
the events we’ve held over the past several years in doing this.”
Hunt is in his fourth year coaching football at Auburn High School,
just south of Seattle. He and his wife, Lisa, have a six-year-old son