First SMART Institute Appreciation Awards

Barbara Morris, assistant director of the SMART Institute, presents Coach of the Year Award to Gaither HS Coach Thomas Payne.

The Sports Medicine and Athletic Related Trauma Institute held its first annual SMART Appreciation Event for coaches, parents, athletic trainers and their families June 2 at the USF Health Morsani Center for Advanced Healthcare. Inaugural awards were presented for Coach of the Year, Parent of the Year, and Comeback Athlete of the Year to those receiving the most nominations from the SMART certified athletic trainers working in the Hillsborough County high schools.

Thomas Payne, a defensive backs football coach for Gaither High School, was recognized as 2009 Coach of the Year. This award was given to a coach who supported the school’s athletic trainer, allowed them to complete their responsibilities and accepted decisions regarding student athletes’ health.

“Coach Payne truly understood the importance of an athletic trainer in the secondary setting and supported the SMART sports safety mission,” said Barbara Morris, MS, ATC, assistant director of the SMART Institute. “He donated large amounts of athletic training supplies to Vicki Kean, the SMART ATC at Gaither. And, during the fall sports banquet, he left during the ceremony to search for a florist so that Vicki and her USF athletic training student could be presented with flowers as a token of the team’s appreciation.”

Chap Celerin, a parent from Brandon High School, was named Parent of the Year for supporting the delivery of athletic training services to the school’s student athletes. Celerin was cited for enthusiastically and quickly assisting the SMART athletic trainer at Brandon, without interfering with the athletic trainer’s job responsibilities.

Demetrice Devlin, a student at Blake High School, won the Comeback Athlete of the Year award. Devlin suffered a potentially career-ending injury during the third football game of the season, and through hard work, dedication, a positive attitude and proper rehabilitation guidance from SMART athletic trainer Sharvettye Frazier, he returned to play the last few games of the season.

Attendees had the opportunity to meet USF Health orthopedic surgeons and USF Bulls team physicians and to tour the Morsani Center.

Morris with Parent of the Year Chap Celerin (Brandon HS)

Morris with Comeback Athlete of the Year Demetrice Devlin, a student at Blake HS.