The NWHL announced the league’s 2020 NWHL Foundation Award winners on Tuesday morning. According to the league website, this recognition is awarded “to the player most actively applying the core values of hockey to her community as well as growing and improving hockey culture.”
One player from each of the league’s five teams receives the award. The 2020 winners listed below:
- Buffalo Beauts: Emma Ruggiero
- Boston Pride: Lexi Bender
- Connecticut Whale: Jordan Brickner
- Metropolitan Riveters: Rebecca Morse
- Minnesota Whitecaps: Allie Thunstrom/
Last year’s recipients were Kelly Babstock, Kimberly Sass, Sarah Hughson, Hannah Brandt, and Mallory Souliotis. While none of those players repeated this year, Lexi Bender is a two-time recipient, since she also received the award in 2018.
Recipients were chosen by the league after consulting each team’s staff, according to the official press release. In the same release, Deputy Commissioner Michelle Picard (who is also a two-time NWHL Foundation Award recipient) attributes these players’ selection to their “hard work and generosity of spirit with fans and young players.”
The release also specifically recognized Bender’s off-ice activities. In addition to being a current law student at Northeastern, she also regularly attends youth development camps coordinated by the Boston Bruins and Pride and has been “instrumental in advancing the game in her home state of Washington.”
The other individual 2019-20 NWHL Awards will be announced later this month. You can prepare ahead of time by reading The Ice Garden’s predictions, and stay updated by following us on Twitter.