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Soccer treasurer can take Dedication to Soccer Award to the bank

'Marsha has always been the community volunteer who works tirelessly to make things happen, while never seeking any praise or recognition'
Dedicated youth soccer executive Marsha Bower.

When the 2023 “Dedication to Soccer” award winner, Marsha Bower, was contacted by the North Bay Sports Awards Committee she was in disbelief, saying, “No not me!”

This should not come as a surprise to anyone who has met Marsha or has had the pleasure of working with her on the North Bay Youth Soccer Club Board.

"Marsha has always been the community volunteer who works tirelessly to make things happen, while never seeking any praise or recognition," The North Bay Sports Hall of Fame stated in a release. 

Marsha was first introduced to the game of soccer in North Bay in 1981, when her young sons, Shawn, and Jason, started playing the sport. Jason played on a team coached by Harvey Knight, and it was not long before Harvey’s wife Sue recruited Marsha onto the North Bay Youth Soccer Club Board. To the best of Marsha’s recollection, this was in 1984 or 1985.

Marsha has served on this board in various capacities every year since, before taking on the position of treasurer in the early 1990s. At the time, Marsha was employed as a registered nurse but did have limited book-keeping experience. Marsha says she was asked to become the treasurer because she had a Quicken program and knew how to use it!

Unfortunately for Marsha, every year at the AGM nobody on the executive expressed any interest in taking on her position so she willingly just kept the job. To serve on any volunteer board for almost 40 years is an incredible accomplishment, but the success Marsha had as treasurer was truly remarkable. She recalls working on the fundraising committee in the early years when Sue and she worked two Bingo sessions every Saturday night. It was not unusual to have between 400 and 500 people at each session so this was a significant fundraiser for the board. It is difficult to imagine the number of Bingos Marsha volunteered for in the time she served on the board. She also was available to manage the board’s Nevada ticket account.

"Thanks in large part to Marsha’s ongoing commitment and stewardship of our funds we were able to donate $500,000 to the Omischl Sports Complex, $60,000 to the new turf field at Nipissing University and to provide financial support for the Trojan Alumni Complex," stated Paul Cook, head coach. "We are also able to financially assist numerous other community groups, many of them youth-focused.”

Marsha takes pride in the fact that the registration fees to play have not really increased over these many years, as the Club always came up with the money to cover the ever-increasing costs of uniforms, equipment, and field rentals.

“It has been a long journey and I remained on the board all of this time because of the people, especially the thousands of youth who played and the success of the program each year,” Club President Sue Knight said about Marsha. “Here is to the countless memories we shared on this journey as friends and this well-deserved recognition. Cheers to you!”

Marsha Bower will be presented with her award at the 43rd Annual Induction and Awards Dinner on Saturday, May 11, 2024, at the Davedi Club. Tickets are available by contacting Larry Tougas (705-303-8104), Trista Grant (705-472-0009), or the Davedi Club (705-474-4190).