One of the most encouraging aspects of the job I have enjoyed for more than 30 years is what I see on display whenever I attend regular-season contests and Michigan High School Athletic Association tournaments. It's the many volunteers who make the events run smoothly.
From parking lot supervisors, to ticket sellers and ticket takers, to concession stand cooks and servers, to program sellers, to the dozens of people needed to time and measure and otherwise administer large meets in individual sports ... volunteers are the blood pulsing through the veins of school-sponsored sports events.
They work in numbers that amaze me; they work with consistency and longevity that humbles me. They show up years after their own children were participants. I can attend the same event several years in a row and see most of the same volunteers serving year after year. Serving with enthusiasm and with joy, and with no more compensation than a T-shirt, sandwich and soft drinks.
Appropriately, our trophies and medals go to the top-performing student-athletes. But my gratitude goes to these many behind-the-scenes adults.
Thanks for another great year.