The Lexington Legends and two of their executives have been recognized with awards from the South Atlantic League.
The Legends as an organization received the Club Merit Award, which is given, according to league criteria, “to recognize the complete baseball franchise that has demonstrated franchise stability and success, as well as significant contributions to its community and to the South Atlantic League.”
Gary Durbin, executive vice president and general manager, was the named the league’s General Manager of the Year.
Anne Mapson, special projects manager and executive assistant to the president, was named South Atlantic League Female Executive of the Year.
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“Gary has been a rock and a staple of the Lexington Legends for 16 years,” said Legends President/CEO Andy Shea. “His institutional knowledge and network of our facility, company, and industry is simply invaluable. In Anne’s second season with the Legends, she did a lot of everything and did it all exceptionally well. As our point person for the South Atlantic League All Star Game, many facility projects including our brand new Bullpen Patio, and our top sales person, she excelled in every facet of her job. We are very fortunate to have Gary and Anne in our company and in our community.
“Winning the Club Merit Award in our League is a truly humbling honor, but also one that I feel our organization has earned,” Shea added. “Every year, starting with the first day of the off-season, our entire team does everything as big and as great as we can, and it’s a great feeling being recognized by your peers for your efforts.”
In competing for the Club Merit Award, the Legends cited several projects from the past year, including:
▪ Serving as host for the 2016 South Atlantic League All-Star Game, which was played at Whitaker Bank Ballpark on June 21.
▪ Conducting the first “Stache Tank” competition, based on the television program “Shark Tank,” in which teams of local students took part in competition with others on their level to create a Legends giveaway promotion and to create a new use for an area of the ballpark where a basketball court is now located. “Stache Tank” refers to the Legends mustache logo.
▪ Sponsoring 10 students, including nine black students from Kentucky State University, to attend a job fair at baseball’s winter meetings in Nashville in December 2015. The Legends supported the students through payment of hotel expenses and a one-year subscription to PBEO.com (Professional Baseball Employment Opportunities), the official employment service of minor league baseball.
▪ Continuing their Community Organization of the Night program, which allows non-profit organizations from around the region to be recognized at a Legends home game with information distribution and interviews on the field and on radio.
▪ Having an ongoing presence and involvement in the community. The Legends front office staff, players and coaches participated in 240 appearances at schools, businesses, youth baseball leagues and other organizations and volunteered nearly 300 additional hours to regular philanthropic organizations.
Presentation of the awards will take place at the South Atlantic League meeting in October.