Lawmakers, governor honor State Games athletes
special to The Star
Two Lauderdale County athletes have been named the 2001 State Games of Mississippi BellSouth Athletes of the Year and were honored on the floor of the Mississippi Legislature Wanda McAlister of Collinsville and Anthony Thomas of Meridian.
At the Capitol, a resolution was passed in their honor.
On the Senate floor, Sens. Terry Burton and Videt Carmichael applauded the athletes' performances during the 2001 State Games. The Senate resolution was presented to the athletes by Carmichael and Lt. Gov. Amy Tuck.
A delegation from the Mississippi House of Representatives, including Reps. Greg Snowden and Charles Young, led their colleagues in passing a resolution recognizing McAlister and Thomas for their outstanding achievements in organized athletics.
State Games of Mississippi was also recognized as a showcase for amateur athletes, providing an avenue for camaraderie, positive personal development and achievement.
In the governor's office, Gov. Ronnie Musgrove presented them State Games of Mississippi Athlete of the Year medallions and plaques. Musgrove congratulated the pair on their hard work and success.
The State Games of Mississippi established the annual BellSouth Athlete of the Year Award to recognize amateur athletes. Coaches, officials, athletes, volunteers and spectators nominate one male and one female athlete from each sport for the award. The athletes nominated personify the ideals of the State Games movement participation, sportsmanship, special attributes, achievements, efforts and positive attitudes.
McAlister and Thomas will have the opportunity to be the official torch runners in the 2002 State Games of Mississippi Opening Ceremonies and will work with State Games officials throughout the year to promote amateur athletics.
This summer, in its 11th year, the State Games of Mississippi will offer 30 events. Competition for the State Games of Mississippi will take place in Meridian on two weekends June 15-16 and June 20-23. The Opening Ceremonies are scheduled for June 14, at 7:30 p.m., at Meridian High School's Ray Stadium.