Chicago Wolves left wing Brett Sterling has been named the team’s Dan Snyder Man of the Year in recognition of his commitment to service and the Chicagoland community.
The honor is given to a Wolves player each year in memory of Snyder, who passed away on Oct. 5, 2003, after suffering major head injuries in a car accident. Snyder spent two seasons with the Wolves (2001-2003) and helped the team earn the 2002 Calder Cup Championship.
Wolves Chairman of the Board Don Levin, Vice Chairman Buddy Meyers and General Manager Wendell Young will present STERLING with the award before the team battles the Grand Rapids Griffins in their regular-season finale at the Allstate Arena on Sat., April 10, at 7 p.m.
“It is always refreshing when someone so successful on the ice is as successful off the ice,” said Vice President of Operations Courtney Mahoney. “Brett has a tremendous attitude and exhibits all the characteristics we look for in a contributor to the community. His attitude and enthusiasm reminds me a lot of Dan Snyder and I am really proud to give him this award.”
In his four years with the Wolves, STERLING has continually participated in Wolves community endeavors. This year, the Los Angeles native took it upon himself to begin a new community initiative with a local charity called Common Threads. Common Threads teaches low-income children to cook wholesome and affordable meals, hoping that their hands-on cooking classes help prevent childhood obesity and reverse the trend of generations of non-cookers. STERLING cooked with a class at Sheridan School and spent time talking with the students, learning about their backgrounds and sharing his experiences as a professional athlete.
In addition, STERLING visited the Children’s Memorial Hospital each month and played bingo with the patients. He handed out prizes, met with patients and signed autographs. The left-wing also has visited libraries throughout Chicagoland as part of the Wolves’ most successful educational program, “Read to Succeed.”
STERLING also participated in the Wolves fourth annual “Hockey for Her” event. The fundraising event allows Wolves female fans to receive a behind-the-scenes tour of the team’s practice facility, as well as learn some of the finer points of hockey. STERLING hosted the room that focused on the shootout. His participation, and an auction item of lunch with him and a teammate, helped raise nearly $5,000 for Chicago Wolves Charities. STERLING also took part in the “Get Fed by the Wolves” fundraiser, where players act as waiters for the day to raise money.
The 25-year-old forward also was one of 29 finalists from around the league for the AHL’s 2009-10 Yanick Dupre Memorial Award honoring the overall American Specialty/AHL Man of the Year, given annually to one player who exemplifies the commitment to service in their community.
Previous winners of the Dan Snyder Memorial Award include former Wolves left wing Jordan LaVallee-Smotherman (2008-09), defenseman Nathan Oystrick (2007-08), defenseman Brian Sipotz (2006-07), former left wing Karl Stewart (2004-05 and 2005-06) and former defenseman Kurtis Foster (2003-04).