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Women's Soccer Award of Excellence

Sponsored by the Washington Area Girls Soccer League (WAGS), the Women's Soccer Award of Excellence was established in 1999 to recognize those who have brought honor and distinction to women's soccer. WAGS has supplied sponsorship funds from this award to be used in the promotion of the women's game through various inner-city programs. Funds also will be donated to charities that promote female soccer participation.


2015 Women’s Soccer Award of Excellence Nomination Form

Past Winners

  • 2015 - Janet Rayfield, University of Illinois
  • 2014 - Denise Dallamora, Brandeis University
  • 2013 - Kristine Lilly, United States Women's National Team
  • 2012 - Lesle Gallimore, University of Washington
  • 2011 - Sue Ryan, Stony Brook University
  • 2010 - John Daly, College of William and Mary
  • 2009 - Louise Waxler, Kicks Against Breast Cancer
  • 2008 - Tony DiCicco, Boston Breakers
  • 2007 - Charlotte Moran, Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer Association
  • 2006 - Anson Dorrance, University of North Carolina
  • 2005 - Lynn Berling-Manuel, CEO and Publisher of Soccer America
  • 2004 - Colleen Hacker, Pacific Lutheran University
  • 2003 - Adele Dolansky, Washington Area Girls Soccer League
  • 2002 - Michelle Morgan, Amherst College
  • 2001 - Lauren Gregg, WUSA Vice President of Player Personnel and Technical Director
  • 2000 - Michelle Akers, U.S. Women’s National Team, FIFA Female Player of the Century
  • 1999 - April Heinrichs, U.S. Women’s National Team

2010 - John Daly

2010 Award of Excellence John Daly

John Daly poses with friends and family from the College of William and Mary after receiving the 2010 Women's Advocacy Group Award of Excellence.

John Daly, Head Women's Soccer Coach at the College of William and Mary, has been selected as the Women’s Advocacy Group’s Award of Excellence recipient.

"I am honored and humbled to join such exalted company. It was totally unexpected and is greatly appreciated”, coach Daly remarked on earning the honor. “To be mentioned in the same breath as the late, wonderful Charlotte Moran, Louise Waxler, former Tribe assistant coach April Heinrichs and coaching legends such as Anson Dorrance and Tony DiCicco, among others, is a great honor." 

Of Daly, William and Mary Athletics Director Terry Driscoll said, “As a teacher, as a coach and as an ambassador for the game of women‘s soccer, John is an outstanding example of what can be accomplished through dedication, humility and class. We are thrilled that John’s peers have recognized him as a most deserving recipient of this prestigious award”. 

An institution at the College, Daly has been the head women’s soccer coach for 24 seasons, guiding the Tribe to 24-straight winning seasons and to 20 NCAA Tournament appearances. Daly has coached the side in 506 matches, amassing a record of 330-137-39 (.691) overall and a mark of 114-28-12 (.779) in the Colonial Athletic Association. 

Amongst his peers, Daly by all measures ranks as one of the top 20 coaches in NCAA history. When the College defeated Delaware in double-overtime on Oct. 3, 2008, Daly became just the fourth women’s soccer coach in NCAA Division I history to win 300 games all with the same school. All told, Daly is the ninth coach in Division I to accomplish the remarkable feat of 300 victories and the 19th across all divisions in the NCAA. 

Long the winningest-coach in school history, Daly surpassed his predecessor, John Charles, in 1992 with a 3-1 decision over New Hampshire to record his 64th victory and has since piled up an additional 229 wins. Daly had another milestone on Sept. 7 last season when he coached his 450th career match against Columbia, becoming only the sixth coach in Division I history to reach the milestone at one school. 

The magnitude of Daly’s accomplishments, which include capturing nine CAA titles, six Regional Coach of the Year awards, and four CAA Coach of the Year plaques, has not been lost on the greater William and Mary community. In 2004, the College named its new all-grass stadium in joint honor of Daly and former men’s coach Al Albert, “the ultimate accolade” in a storied coaching career. 

2009 - Louise Waxler

Louise Waxler Award of Excellence 2009

Kathie Diapoulis, President of the Washington Area Girls Soccer, presents the Women's Advocacy Group Award of Excellence to Louise Waxler.

Louise Waxler, Director of Kicks Against Breast Cancer and the Director of Operations for the Philadelphia Independence, is recognized as one of the bedrock pioneers that has brought women’s and girls' soccer to the forefront of sports in the United States. Her experience spans executive leadership, operational planning and execution, and corporate construction, as well as sports PR and events management.

Louise has been a member of the NSCAA since 1991 and served in several distinctive positions within the organization, including President, Women’s Advocacy Group Chairperson, Youth Representative, and Board of Directors.

For more than 20 years, Louise has served in key roles of professional and amateur sports management within the Maryland, DC, and Virginia soccer communities, as well as on the national and international levels for soccer expansion and governance. Most recently, she served as the Director of Operations for the WPS Washington Freedom where she managed all team, venue, and game day operations for the franchise. Louise was Maryland’s FIFA Women’s World Cup National Coalition Chair and currently serves as Executive Vice President of the Maryland State Youth Soccer Association Board of Directors. 

She is widely recognized and respected for her experience running youth and professional sports and soccer events. She served as Director of the Washington Area Girls Soccer Tournament, RFK Stadium Director for Women’s World Cup Tournament, was a member of the staff at the Adidas/Disney International Youth Soccer Tournament, and served as Director of Discovery Cup Soccer Tournament and Columbia Invitational Soccer Tournament.

Louise founded the KICKS Against Breast Cancer charity soccer tournament in 1996 in honor of her friend Claudia Mayer, who died of breast cancer at the age of 47. This “labor of love,” has become American soccer’s initiative to raise money to help find a cure for breast cancer and to help women living with cancer to survive and thrive. This year was its 13th year of competition, and the tournament is still going strong!

2008 - Tony DiCicco

Award of Excellence Tony DiCicco 2008

From left to right, Anson Dorrance, Lauren Gregg, Tony DiCicco, Lula Bauer and Amanda Vandervort each spoke at the 2008 Women's Soccer Breakfast.

Tony DiCicco, Head Coach for the Boston Breakers and former U.S. Women’s National Team head coach, is one of the most recognizable names in women’s soccer. DiCicco guided the USA to the 1996 Olympic Gold Medal and the historic 1999 World Cup championship, while accumulating a record of 103-8-8 – making him the all-time wins leader in U.S. National Team Soccer history. 

For six years DiCicco was the head coach of the U.S. Women’s National Team. His 1999 Women’s World Cup squad changed the face of women’s athletics forever, winning the championship over China in front of the largest crowd in women’s sports history (90,185 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena on July 10, 1999) and a worldwide television audience. He also guided the U.S. team to a third-place finish at the second FIFA Women’s World Cup in Sweden in June of 1995 and championships at U.S. Women’s Cups in 1995, 1996, 1997 and 1998. DiCicco and the USA Women’s National Team also won the Goodwill Games Gold Medal in 1998. 

The 1996 Olympic Gold Medal team has recently been inducted into the United States Olympic Hall of Fame. After the World Cup triumph, DiCicco served as the WUSA’s COO in 2001 and its Commissioner in 2002 and 2003, and the Chairman of the Re-launch committee in 2004. Most recently, DiCicco served as head coach of the U.S. Under-20 Women’s National Team, guiding the Americans to the 2008 FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup championship in Chile. Before becoming the head coach of the U.S. National Team, DiCicco had served as the squad’s assistant coach since 1991, working with the goalkeepers during the USA’s triumph at the first FIFA Women’s World Cup in China in 1991. He also served as the goalkeeper and assistant coach for the 1993 Under-20 Men’s National Team at the 7th FIFA World Youth Championship in Australia.

2007 - Charlotte Moran

Charlotte Moran Award of Excellence 2007
Lula Bauer and Louise Waxler present Charlotte Moran with the 2007 Women's Advocacy Group Award of Excellence.

Charlotte Moran, the executive director of the Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer Association, has been selected to receive the 2007 NSCAA Women’s Advocacy Group Award of Excellence. Moran has been involved in soccer for more than 20 years, beginning at the grassroots level as a team manager and a national state association president. 

A staunch supporter of girls and women soccer players, she has hosted women’s national team games in Pennsylvania, promoted the professional women’s league and encouraged clubs and schools to offer girls’ soccer. The US Youth Soccer Region I Girls’ ODP Administrator for a number of years, she has worked with the girls in her region to teach a love the game, not only as a player but a spectator. On many occasions she has addressed girls’ teams and organizations, sharing with them of the unique qualities of the game and how the team concept fostered in the game helps them in their personal growth. 

2006 - Anson Dorrance

Award of Excellence 2006 Anson Dorrance

Louise Waxler presents the Women's Advocacy Group Award of Excellence to Anson Dorrance as Janet Rayfield addresses the crowd.

Anson Dorrance, now in his 31st season as the University of North Carolina head coach, has an all-time record of 673-33-21 (.940). Under Dorrance, UNC has won 20 national championships, including 19 NCAA crowns and one AIAW title, 19 regular-season ACC titles and 19 ACC Tournament championships. During his tenure, Dorrance's teams are 132-7-4 in ACC regular-season games, 54-0-3 in ACC Tournament matches and 100-7-1 in NCAA Tournament games. 

Dorrance has been named national coach of the year for coaching both women and men. He earned women's national honors in 1982, 1986, 1997, 2000, 2003 and 2006 and he was named men's national coach of the year in 1987. Dorrance has been named the Southeast Region coach of the year in 1989, 1996, 1997, 2001, 2003, 2006 and 2008. In 1987, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1996, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2006 and 2008, he was named the ACC Women's Soccer Coach of the Year. In 1996, Dorrance received the highest honor possible from the National Soccer Coaches Association of America when he won the Walt Chyzowych Award for lifetime coaching achievement. In 2007, he won the Bill Jeffrey Award from the NSCAA for raising intercollegiate soccer to new heights through his long-term dedication to the game. 

Following the U.S. victory in the Women's World Cup in 1991, Dorrance received an Honorary All-America Award, one of the most prestigious of its kind, from the NSCAA. In 1991, Soccer America named Dorrance one of the 20 most influential men in American soccer during the previous two decades. Soccer America followed that up in 1995 by naming Dorrance as one of the 25 most influential people in the history of American soccer. Dorrance was one of only three coaches on that list and the only women's coach tapped. 

2005 - Lynn Berling-Manuel

Lynn Berling-Manuel Award of Excellence
Sue Ryan, Louise Waxler and Lula Bauer present the 2006 Women's Advocacy Group Award of Excellence to Lynn Berling-Manuel.

Lynn Berling Manuel, the CEO and Publisher of Soccer America magazine, was selected as the recipient of the NSCAA Women's Advocacy Group Award of Excellence for 2005. Berling-Manuel received the award on Friday, January 20th, 2006, at the NSCAA/adidas Women's Forum Luncheon. 

Berling-Manuel has been a positive role model for women in the sport for 30 years, having helped guide Soccer America from its fledgling beginnings as a regional newsletter to one of the most respected soccer magazines and soccer information companies in the world. A former political reporter, Berling-Manuel joined Soccer America in 1975 as its first full-time managing editor. In addition to its magazine and directory, Soccer America delivers daily American, MLS and international headlines, news, comprehenisve television listings, men's and women's national college coverage and many other services in member-only electronic publications, including College Soccer Reporter, SoccerAmerica Daily, MLS Confidential and Soccer on TV. She is acknowledged as one of the leading experts on the United States soccer market and works on an on-going bases with soccer organizations and major corporations in assisting them design their soccer marketing strategies. 

In 2005, Berling-Manuel collaborated with Louise Waxler, current NSCAA President and president of Integrated Sports Management, and Connie Bivens, president of Sports Pins International, to launch the Kicks Against Breast Cancer Pin Project. Modeled after the Lance Armstrong Live Strong bracelet program, the Pin Project features a gold soccer ball lapel pin enameled with a pink ribbon. So far, nearly 10,000 pins have been sold. 

Berling-Manuel currently serves on the board of directors of the National Soccer Hall of Fame in Oneonta, NY. She is also president of the West Berkeley Foundation, an organization that in the last 12 years has granted $1,200,000 to disadvantaged children, seniors and families in the community where Soccer America has its offices. She is a two-term past president of the Professional Soccer Reporters Association, and is a recipient of the NSCAA Merit Award.