DANA POINT, Calif. (October 17, 2016) On Friday evening at the seventh annual espnW: Women + Sports Summit presented by Toyota, espnW and Toyota introduced the fourth class of “Everyday Heroes,” an award that celebrates individuals making a difference for women and girls in their local communities through sports. Grants in the amount of $10,000 are provided to the organizations honored.
“For the fourth year, Toyota is proud to recognize and celebrate these outstanding ‘Everyday Heroes’ for the work they have done to empower women and girls through sports making an immense impact in communities around the country,” said Nancy Inouye, national media manager, Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. “We applaud these heroes and their energy, commitment and vision, which inspire us all.”
The 2016 Toyota “Everyday Heroes” are:
Courtney Payne Taylor
(Founder, Girls Riders
Girls Riders Organization (GRO) supports girls through action sports such as skateboarding, snowboarding and more, teaching them it’s more than just an activity, but a platform for life lessons. GRO’s mission is to inspire, educate and support girls through action sports to be active in life and confident leaders of positive change in the community around them. Courtney Payne Taylor founded GRO after skateboarding helped her turn her own life around. Her goal is to have a GRO Crew in every state in the U.S.
/ GROW Girl
GROW and GROW Girl were founded in 2007 with a mission to foster personal and professional development opportunities for multi-cultural women and girls through a mutual interest in the game of golf. Participants learn how to approach life lessons through the game and pursue their dreams. GROW sees golf as untapped scholarship potential, especially in urban areas, to allow women to further their education.
(Founder, Philly Girls In Motion
Philly Girls in Motion is a volunteer-driven organization that delivers fitness and nutrition programs for girls through the City of Philadelphia’s Recreation Centers as well as select schools. Serving 500+ girls annually spanning second to eighth grades, their goal is to get girls moving and to teach them and their families about healthy nutrition, exercise and positive body image. Fitness programs, basketball, volleyball, lacrosse, rugby and yoga are all offered through the organization.
“These three women epitomize what it means to be a hero by being agents for positive change in their local communities, and espnW is honored to recognize these effective, inspirational programs,” said Laura Gentile, senior vice president, espnW & Women’s Initiatives. “With their tireless work and dedication to ensuring girls are equipped to lead healthy lives, they have demonstrated how sports can make a real and lasting impact.”
Last year’s Toyota Everyday Heroes
were Chrissy Lewis-Summers, founder of Beyond Sticks and Heidi Boynton, founder of Mini Mermaid Running Club. The 2014 honorees
were Dr. Kimberley S. Clay, Monica Gonzalez and Claire Smallwood. In 2013, espnW and Toyota recognized
Barb Lazarus, Justine Siegal and Mobolaji Akidoe as the inaugural recipients.