Bill Lott Volunteer of the Year – Fritz Stoppelbein

Presented by Judy Alexander

I have known this young man since he was an out of town high school runner, excelling in cross country and track and calling me “Coach A.” Back then, he made sure his team was coached and had transportation to and from meets in order to properly represent their school, which was 75 miles from Tallahassee. This was a high school student athlete acting as the responsible adult, and sometimes the only one who led his teams. He was also an All Star Cheerleader who was flown to England by the Universal Cheerleading Association to cheer in the London Parade. Contrary to the fact that he is a running speedster, he collects turtles of all kinds, including stuffed animals and figurines of the amphibious reptile.

He is now a college graduate pursuing a career in law enforcement, engaged to Miranda Sasser, and an excellent runner. As my contemporary, he now calls me “Judy.” His volunteer spirit has gotten even stronger as the years have gone by. Now, when he is not clobbering the competition in a race, he can be seen in all kinds of weather volunteering at road races, cross country and track meets, and organizing his fraternity to help at races as well. Several race directors have extolled his virtues, saying things ranging from, “He always has something positive to say to each finisher in the chute,” to “He really has the wrist action to tear off the bib strips quickly!” In short, he is ready, willing, able and available to do anything a race director needs.

It is my pleasure to know and my honor to present the 2008 Gulf Winds Track Club Volunteer of the Year award to: Mr. Fritz Stoppelbein!