Greater Washington Sports Alliance

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The Greater Washington Sports Alliance (GWSA) is a non-profit organization, founded in 2003 under the Greater Washington Board of Trade. Currently, an independent entity, its board is headed by Chairman Fernando Murias, Managing Partner of PriceWaterhouseCoopers. It is the regional sports commission for the Greater Washington D.C. area and is a comprehensive resource for promoting sporting events, delivering sports information and developing regional collaboration.

The Sports Alliance's mission is fourfold:
•To attract marquee sporting events to the Greater Washington region
•To connect the business community to the professional franchises, universities and local amateur teams in the region
•To brand Greater Washington as a sports destination
•To support youth investment activities that use sports to build character and values, encourage fitness and enhance education.

The GWSA produces the SunTrust National Marathon, held annually in Washington, D.C. It is also heavily involved in promoting other regional sporting events including Tiger Woods' AT&T National golf tournament, the Capitol Hill Volleyball Classic, the ING Direct Capital Criterium, and SneakerBall. In the past, GWSA has helped promote the FLW Outdoor Bass Fishing Tournament and America's Polo Cup. The GWSA also helped promote the 2007 WNBA All-Star Game, the Legg Mason Tennis Classic, and the MLS Cup held at RFK Stadium in 2007.

The GWSA hosted of the Frozen Four portion of the 2009 NCAA Men's Division I Ice Hockey Tournament which was held at the Verizon Center on April 9 and 11th.

League of Charities[edit]

Greater Washington Sports Alliance Foundation
Through its Charitable Programs Committee, the Greater Washington Sports Alliance Foundation creates avenues for sports-oriented corporate philanthropy to enhance the region's youth sports programs and facilities.[clarification needed] The Greater Washington Sports Alliance Foundation, a 501(c)3, supports youth investment initiatives.

Progressive Sports and Entertainment Alliance

DC Parks and Recreation Southeast Tennis & Learning Center

United for DC

Washington Mystics Foundation
The Washington Mystics Foundation is a national non-profit organization dedicated to improving and maintaining the health and well-being of youth. The initial focus of the foundation will be in the area of childhood obesity prevention. The proceeds from this event provide funding for the Washington Mystics Foundation's programs and community outreach throughout the Washington metropolitan region.

Washington Tennis & Education Foundation
The Washington Tennis & Education Foundation (WTEF) was founded in 1955 as an organization designed to help disadvantaged youth through tennis. Since then, it has evolved into an organization that provides academic help at-risk children, by helping them to apply the lessons learned on the tennis court in the classroom and beyond.

Washington Inner City Lacrosse Foundation
The Washington Inner City Lacrosse Foundation (WINNERS Lacrosse) is a nonprofit organization that was started in October 2000 to provide youth from historically under-served neighborhoods, in the greater Washington metropolitan area, the opportunity to learn the game of lacrosse. WINNERS Lacrosse's clinics, camps, and programs include these virtues as part of the curriculum. WINNERS Lacrosse has designed programs and formed partnerships with other organizations that have a similar mission and requisite capabilities.

Junior Monumental Milers Program (JuMMP)[edit]

The Junior Monumental Milers Program (JuMMP) is a 23-week run/walk program challenges students in grades 2-8, to get off the couch and into their sneakers and run or walk 42.195 kilometres (26.219 mi). JuMMP is run in conjunction with the SunTrust National Marathon, held annually in Washington, D.C. On race day morning, students can bring their finished Runner's Log down to the SunTrust National Marathon's JuMMP Finish Line Festival to receive their runner's bib and complete a victory lap.

JuMMP is an easy activation program to promote physical fitness and goal setting.

The 2009 JuMMP program has partnered with D.C. Parks and Recreation, D.C. Public Schools, Metropolitan Washington YMCA clubs, Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Washington, and Fit Arlington creating unlimited opportunities for students to run or walk their miles. Children can run or walk their miles at their local recreation center whenever they can, after school or on the weekend.

Capital Criterium[edit]

The ING Direct Capital Criterium is a clockwise bike course run on a 1 km, 6-corner circuit. The start/finish line is located on Pennsylvania Avenue between 12th and 13th Streets.

Capitol Hill Volleyball Classic[edit]

An annual volleyball tournament that brings over 500 youth girls teams to the District of Columbia to compete. The tournament features some of the nation's best teams, and serves as an important college recruitment tool as well as an event to grow the sport of volleyball in the region.

Frozen Four[edit]

The 2009 NCAA Division I Men's Ice Hockey Championship was held in Washington D.C. from April 9 - 11th. This marked the first time our nation’s Capital hosted a Division I NCAA Championship event. The Frozen Four was held at the Verizon Center and was co-hosted by the U.S. Naval Academy and the Greater Washington Sports Alliance.

The 2009 Frozen Four activities, all held at the Verizon Center, included a Skills Challenge, both Semi-Final games, and the Championship game.


SneakerBall is a unique black-tie and sneakers event, beginning in 2004, that honors the Greater Washington region's sports pioneers and their accomplishments. SneakerBall includes a cocktail reception, silent auction, dinner, GWSA awards ceremony, and games and amusements. The attendees of SneakerBall include over 100 professional athletes and Olympians, Greater Washington's sports franchise ownership groups, leaders of the region's business community, and the Sports Alliance charitable partners.

Hall of Champions
Each year, individuals are inducted into the Greater Washington Sports Hall of Champions. These men and women are recognized for their significant contributions to the region's sports community, over the course of their careers, and have created opportunities in our region for "great moments to happen".

Former Inductees:

• Eunice Kennedy Shriver

• Adrian Dantley
• Brian Mitchell
• Brig Owens

• Bobby Mitchell
• Frank Robinson
• Deborah A. Yow

• James Brown
• Ted Leonis
• Coach Morgan Wootten

• Dominique Dawes
• Art Monk
• John Thompson, Jr.

• Darrell Green
• Abe Pollin
• Gary Williams

Sportsman of the Year
In addition to the Hall of Champions, SneakerBall has begun to honor a local Sportsman of the Year. This honor is given to a local sportsman who in the past year has not only displayed excellence on the field of play, but also showed a commitment to the Greater Washington community. The Sportsman of the Year Award was first awarded in 2008 at SneakerBall V to Alexander Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals.

Alexander Ovechkin
In 2008, Ovechkin became the first NHL player to win four esteemed awards in just one season: the Art Ross Trophy (Most Points - 12), Maurice Richard Trophy (Most Goals - 65), Hart Trophy (MVP), and Lester B. Pearson Award (Most Outstanding Player). In the 2007-08 season, Ovechkin used his dynamic scoring to lead the Capitals to their first playoff appearance since 2002.

The event benefits local youth investment organizations that use sports to enhance education, encourage physical fitness, and develop leadership skills.
These organizations include:
• Progressive Sports & Entertainment Alliance
• Southeast Tennis & Learning Center
• United for D.C.
• Washington Mystics Foundation
• Washington Tennis & Education Foundation
• WINNERS Lacrosse

See also[edit]

External links[edit]