Awarded annually, the recipient is someone who has changed "The Game" - for all females - by forging a previously uncharted course in the sport of American Football for the benefit of future generations of girls who desire to play this game.
2022 Recipient - Mitchie Collette
Awarded July 9th, 2022
WFA Championship Weekend - Tom Benson Memorial Stadium, Canton, Ohio
If it were possible for one person to literally “break the mold” in deserving this honor, it would be this year’s recipient, Mitchi Collette, who, for over 50 years, has served the women’s game: as a player, coach, friend, ambassador and mentor.
Mitchi’s journey began as a player for the infamous, Toledo Troopers, where she played from 1973 to 1979. In 1983, the Troopers were recognized by the Pro Football Hall of Fame as the winning-est professional football team in history.
Mitchi next played for the Toledo Furies from 1985 to 1989. Her transition into coaching began in 2002 for the Toledo Spitfire where she served as the Head Coach for one year. The following year, in 2003, she founded the Toledo Reign, and has served as the team’s owner and Head coach to the present day – a nearly 20 year run.
Scientists and Healthcare Sheroes & Heroes
Nearly two years, unprecedented by any in our lifetimes, fraught with challenges on every possible level, the very best of the Human Spirit was witnessed by us all in the form of our dedicated and selfless healthcare workers and scientists worldwide. Our debt of gratitude is one which can never be repaid. Thank you, to each and every one of you, for what you have done in an effort to comfort and heal the world.
2019 Recipient - Annice Canady
Annice Canady receiving her award from WGF COO, Dana Sparling
Annice Canady(L), Dana Sparling (C) and 2018 recipient Toni Harris (R)
Offering words of wisdom and encouragement to the SIG Girls Flag Football Team
Awarded in January, 2020
Pro Bowl Weekend - ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex - Orlando, Florida
In the company of the Staten Island Giants Girls 14U Flag Football team and their families during the NFL National Flag Football Championships, Annice Canady was bestowed our annual award for her ground breaking, ceiling-shattering accomplishments in the area of football officiating.
During her 3rd bout with cancer in 1995, she found herself drawn to officiating which eventually led her to becoming the very first female to officiate in the NCAA.
She has officiated 10 years of high school football, 13 years at the collegiate level, 10 years in both mens and womens flag football and 5 years of women's tackle football.
Annice currently serves as a Coach to Player Communicator in the NFL and also as an NFL Scout/Observer.
2018 Recipient - Antoinette "Toni" Harris
Awarded in January, 2018
New Orleans Saints Training Facility @ WWFG IV
Toni Harris became the very first woman offered a full ride (2 yr) college football scholarship in a non-kicking position (safety). Toni is defined by her ability not only to survive incredible challenges, but overcome them and thrive in her only 23 years of living. An adopted, cancer surviving super women, she is an inspiration to us all!!
2017 Recipient - Gia Stamatelo
Awarded January, 2017
ESPN Wide World of Sports Facility / NFL Pro Bowl Weekend @ WWFG III
Gia Stamatelo began playing tackle football at FIVE years old! At 13 years of age and the ONLY girl on BOTH her recently undefeated Salk Middle School team AND her Levittown Pride team, she is going strong as she paves the way on Long Island for other girls to pursue the sport of football.
2016 Inaugural Recipient - Samantha Rapoport
Awarded January, 2016
New Orleans Saints Training Facility @ WWFG II
Truly the most fitting inaugural recipient, Samantha has championed the causes of women who love and want to play football and continues to do so to this day.
She began playing flag football at the age of 12, eventually landing the job of quarterback for the Montreal Blitz women's tackle football team.
In 2003 she earned herself a marketing internship with the NFL where, after many years of gainful employment with them was awarded the NFL Commissioner’s Innovation Award for her ground breaking, innovative work.
Then, for several years, she left the NFL to work for USA Football to focus on getting more women around the world playing the sport. During her tenure here, she brought to fruition, the Women's World Football Games, which offered an opportunity for women around the world to come to the United States and hone their football skills under the guidance of professional coaches.
In 2016, she was hired by the NFL in role of Director of Football Development with a focus on creating a more defined pipeline for qualified woman and minorities to apply for employment opportunities within the organization.