SCNZ Manawatū Leader Willie Bryant picked up two prizes at the Basketball NZ Awards on 19 May. The awards for Willie Bryant were for Service to Officiating, as well as a Long Service Award.
Among his many roles in basketball, Willie is chaplain for Basketball Manawatū.
Citations for awards for Willie Bryant
IAN GOODWIN SERVICES TO OFFICIATING AWARD
Willie Bryant has been in basketball for 45 years. He has been a player, coach, manager as well as a referee evaluator and trainer.
He has given most of these years to basketball in the Manawatū. Bryant was the Association Leagues Manager for many years, before he moved into teaching. Bryant has trained junior referees. He still fills the role of NBL Referee Evaluator.
LONG SERVICE AWARD
Also the winner of the Official of the Year, Willie Bryant was acknowledged for over 40 years of service to the game.
Bryant has worked in nearly every role in basketball, but it was in officiating that Bryant made his greatest contribution. Referees are vital to sport and developing NZ referees is important for the future.
Bryant is the Referee Coordinator in Palmerston North. In this job Bryant works with 75 junior referees to provide mentoring and guidance.
He has also been involved with Basketball Pacific as a coach and referee, and is still a Referee Trainer and Evaluator for Basketball NZ. Bryant has had a huge impact at a local level in Palmerston North. He is a life member of Basketball Manawatū.
Also honoured at the Awards were Liz and Paul Blackwell. Liz and Paul are owners of the NZ Breakers, and good friends of SCNZ. They have built a family culture at the Breakers and used basketball as a vehicle for positive influence. As part of this, they appointed Grant Harris as club chaplain.