*Service Awards
*Glenn Purdy Meritorious Service Award
*OVR Award Of Excellence
*OVR Commissioner's Award

Ron Wyzynski Receives USA Volleyball's YJOV Award

Ron Wyzynski Receives USA Volleyball's YJOV Award (2002)

On behalf of USA Volleyball's 2002 Awards and Recognition Committee, Art Faura presented Ron Wyzynski with USA Volleyball's Youth/Junior Olympic Volleyball Outstanding Service Award at the second annual OVR awards dinner.

Ron's volleyball resume is extensive. He has been active in the USAV since 1969 as both a player and an official. In 1982 Ron was incorporator and Vice President of the Ohio Valley Region, followed by serving as Assistant Commissioner (1982-88), Commissioner (1989-95), and Executive Director/CEO (1995-present). He also serves as Financial Officer and Registrar (since 1989).

Ron's vision, energy, and determination are evident in all aspects of the Ohio Valley Region. Selected juniors' milestones in Ron's OVR career to date include:

  • In 1989 the OVR registered 590 junior members; by 2002 that number exploded to 9,520.
  • The number of junior teams registered in the OVR grew from 300 in 1994 to 1,050 in 2002.
  • Hosted the nation's first Junior Regional Championships in a convention center (1997).
  • Perennially hosts record-breaking Junior Championships. The 2002 OVR Junior Championships ran on three consecutive weekends, the second two at the Greater Columbus Convention Center, allowing 704 teams to compete.
  • Fosters development of coaches and club directors through IMPACT, CAP, and ASEP courses and clinics.
  • Promotes the OVR High Perfor-mance program for development of elite juniors.
  • Developed the OVR Junior Advisory Board.
  • Created an officer position to work exclusively on player development.
  • Supports the development of junior officials.
  • Took over a region with marginal funds, growing it into a stable, financially solvent organization. Ron has been an excellent fund-raiser, obtaining sponsorships and donations and making sound business decisions.
  • Served on the staff of 6 junior national events and as a member on various ad-hoc committes on the national level.
  • Working to plan and develop the Volleyball Games for the International Children's Games in Cleveland, OH (summer 2004).

    Clearly the awards committee selected well. Congratulations, Ron!

Rick Laskey Honored with the Glenn Purdy Meritorious Service Award

Rick Laskey Honored with the Glenn Purdy Meritorious Service Award (2002)
Glenn Purdy (left) and Bob Price (right) presenting the 2002 Glenn Purdy Meritorious Service Award to Rick Laskey (center) at the OVR Awards Dinner.

Rick Laskey, until recently the Regional Referees' Chairperson, is the 2002 recipient of the Glenn Purdy Meritorious Service Award for his long dedication to the growth of volleyball in the Ohio Valley Region. Bob Price, Commissioner, and Glenn Purdy presented Rick with the tastefully arranged National referee's patch, gold whistle, and engraved plaque at the 2002 OVR Awards Dinner at Mohican State Park lodge, held in conjunction with the annual two-day August board meeting/retreat.

Rick's contributions to the Ohio Valley Region have been profound. Rick began playing volleyball at Antioch in the early '70s. He started officiating rec league volleyball in Yellow Springs in 1978, Ohio HS in 1980, and college in 1984. Rick attained his USAV National Referee rating in 1987, his PAVO National Referee in 1988, and he has been Chairman of the Southwestern Ohio Board of Officials, 1986 to date. Rick was first elected to the Ohio Valley Region Board of Directors in the mid-1980's, and he was appointed as Regional Referees' Chairperson for the OVR in 1992. Rick has also served as tournament director for the annual Air City Tournament in Dayton since 1992. He routinely participates in men's competition both in the Ohio Valley Region and at Nationals with the Miami Valley Masters.

Rick recently resigned his Referees' Chair position and board seats to relocate to North Carolina with his wife, Connie. We wish them happiness and prosperity in their new home.

Nick Nystrom Receives OVR Commissioner's Award

Nick Nystrom Receives OVR Commissioner's Award (2002)
Bob Price (right) presents the OVR Commissioner's Award to Nick Nystrom (left).

In recognition for his dedication to the Ohio Valley Region, Bob Price presented Nick Nystrom with the inaugural OVR Commissioner's Award at the 2002 awards dinner. Highlights of Nick's contributions to the Ohio Valley Region include:

  • Inception, development, and maintenance of the OVR web site, www.ovr.org (officially, 1995-present, although publication of OVR tournaments began earlier). The OVR's website has grown into a vast resource used by volleyball players, coaches, and officials across the country.
  • Publications Editor (2000-present): redesigned, produces, edits, and publishes the OVR newsletter, OVR The Block. Authored and maintains the comprehensive OVR Handbook, providing a valuable reference for players, club directors, team reps, officials, coaches, and parents. Redesigned OVR forms and documents to professional standards commensurate with a first-rate organization.
  • Attracts and works with sponsors, generating financial support for the region while minimizing cost and providing opportunities for OVR members.
  • Serving on the board transitions daily communication with our members, adult and junior alike, into action.

Julie Kovick Named OVR Outstanding Coach

Julie Kovick Named OVR Outstanding Coach (2002)
Julie Kovick, Al Herbert and Micki Fox at Julie's surprise award dinner at the Canton Olive Garden (September 22, 2002).

Julie Kovick, coach of Stark Velocity Juniors 13s, received the Ohio Valley Region Outstanding Junior Coach Award for the 2002 season. Julie was presented with a plaque engraved with her name. At a surprise dinner for this award, she was congratulated by her family members, OVR staff, and parents and girls from her 13s team.

Julie is a hard-working, knowledgeable, and humble coach who would never work for personal recognition. She is dedicated to the players whom she coaches making them the best volleyball players they can be and teaching them life lessons along the way.

Julie made the most of the 2 hours/week where she practiced her team. She spent this time effectively: drilling the fundamental skills. In this small amount of practice time, Julie took her 13s team to be one of the top 16 of 120 teams in the Ohio Valley Region. At tournaments, Julie was at courtside using every possible teachable moment to constantly give feedback to the girls on the court. She was more concerned that they properly executed the skill rather than getting the ball back over the net or winning the game.

Julie cares about her girls on and off the court. Julie makes sure that they treat each other, the coaches, the officials, and their parents properly. Julie is a great role model for the girls as she holds herself to the same high standards of integrity.

Julie also holds the position of Head Volleyball Coach at Jackson High School in Canton, Ohio. She is married to Mark Kovick, and they have a daughter, Nikki, who plays on the Stark Velocity Juniors 13s team.

OVR Website Receives USA Volleyball's 2002 Viggo O. Nelson National Communications Award for Best Region Web Site

OVR Website Receives USA Volleyball's 2002 Viggo O. Nelson National Communications Award for Best Region Web Site

The OVR website, www.ovr.org, is the recipient of USA Volleyball's 2002 Viggo O. Nelson National Communications Award for Best Region Web Site. Bob Price, Commissioner, accepted the award on behalf of the Ohio Valley Region on May 23 at the Dorothy C. Boyce Annual Awards and Recognition Banquet in Dallas.

Nick Nystrom initiated the OVR website and remains as its sole designer and administrator. The site offers continually updated content on all aspects of our organization, greatly reducing operating costs and enabling services that would otherwise be impossible for our tremendous numbers of individuals and teams. A sophisticated, efficient database infrastructure coupled with a robust security model allow tournament and club directors, officials, staff, and others to update information efficiently and with immediate results. www.ovr.org also delivers electronic versions of all OVR publications. It is an invaluable tool for publicizing the region to new members and for promoting volleyball in a general sense. Usage of www.ovr.org has exploded from 1517 hits for the 1996 season to over 2 million for 2002, and the site regularly draws positive comments from readers worldwide.

We are grateful to USA Volleyball for this recognition and seek to build on this success for 2003.

Yoon Ha Received OVR Award of Excellence

(Photos and story are not available at this time.)

Vanessa Garrett Selected for OVR Club Director Award

(Photos and story are not available at this time.)

Bunny Brooks Receives OVR Tournament Director Award

(Photos and story are not available at this time.)


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