Julie Foudy Sports Leadership Academy (JFSLA) Grand Prize Winners of Second Annual "Choose to Matter" Contest

Five Young Women and One Mother/Daughter Team Joined Julie Foudy during their Winner's Trip to ESPN Wide World of Sports at Walt Disney World® and Serve as Youth Leaders at the Special Olympics Florida Summer Games

May 20, 2013, 13:20 ET from The Century Council

SAN CLEMENTE, Calif., May 20, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In conjunction with the Julie Foudy Sports Leadership Academy (JFSLA), the grand prize winners of the 2012 JFSLA Choose to Matter Contest: Kate Walner & Hannah Wells (JFSLA CA); Shannon Moran (JFLSA IL); Emily Jurcsek (JFSLA NJ); Elizabeth and Katie Overberg (Mother/Daughter); and Amber Abernathy (Girl Talk) joined Julie Foudy on an all-expense-paid trip to serve as field managers and soccer mentors at the Special Olympics Florida State Summer Games happening at ESPN Wide World of Sports. Their prize package also includes a 4-day, 3-night stay at the Walt Disney World® All-Star Movies Resort; and a 3-day park-hopper pass to the Walt Disney World® Theme Parks. All thanks to the generous support from Disney Sports Enterprises and The Century Council.

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20120201/DC45462LOGO-b)

Out of the 69 submitted projects, the winning projects included: raising funds for a safe and accessible baseball field and all-inclusive playground for kids with special needs; hosting book drives for inner city schools; educating kids about diabetes prevention; fundraising to help families fighting cancer; and delivering powerful messages to teens to say no to gun violence. The JFSLA Choose to Matter Contest celebrates young women who are passionate leaders and empowers them to choose to make a difference in the lives and communities around them.

"We are incredibly moved and so proud that they are leaders of action and service. Through JFSLA and the Choose to Matter Contest, these young leaders will inspire more young women to be positive change makers," said Julie Foudy, former captain of the US Women's Soccer Team and founder of the Julie Foudy Sports Leadership Academy.

To enter the contest, girls from Julie Foudy's three Sports Leadership Academies (CA, IL, and NJ), JFSLA partner Girl Talk, as well as mom and daughter teams from across the U.S., were invited to create and implement community service projects. Projects were submitted online from 12/15/12 through 1/15/13. From 2/8-2/15/13, America voted online for their favorite projects to help determine finalists in each category. A panel of celebrity judges, including Laura Gentile (VP, espnW), Haley Kilpatrick (Founder/ED, Girl Talk), Leslie Kimball (VP, Communications, The Century Council), Angela Ruggiero (Ice Hockey Olympian), and Julie Foudy chose the grand prize winners based on the following three criteria: 1) understanding of their project issue, 2) innovation and creativity, and 3) impact.

Watch Video Message from Julie Foudy

To read about The Grand Prize Winning Projects, the runner up and honorable mention awarded projects in each category, and all the amazing service projects entered in the Choose to Matter Contest, please visit www.juliefoudyleadership.com.  

Julie and the JFSLA would like to thank Disney Sports and The Century Council for their support of the contest, as well as Contest media partners: espnW and NBC Bay Area.

Choose to Matter by Saluting the Winners Follow the Grand Prize winners at The Special Olympic Games! Go to JFSLA on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest, and Instagram to help congratulate these incredible women and celebrate their projects. Become a fan of the Choose to Matter Contest, get updates, and the latest information on the upcoming 2013 Julie Foudy Sports Leadership Academies, by visiting the JFSLA website.

Media Contacts:
JFSLA: Ann Kletz, akletz@sbcglobal.net, 510-333-3016
The Century Council: Leslie Kimball, KimballL@centurycouncil.org, 202-637-0077
GirlTalk: Jennifer Grizzle, jennifer@theprstudio.com, 770-409-1152

SOURCE The Century Council