Recently, Brianna Decker was interviewed for the Foundation of Sports’ podcast, click here. In her episode she speaks about why giving back is important to her and how she is helping grow the game through her endowment. Brianna is also giving back during the pandemic through a donation to CCM who is providing masks to healthcare workers on the frontlines.
Amy LaPoe is a passionate and dedicated USA Hockey volunteer who is a difference maker as the special hockey representative on USA Hockey’s Disabled Section. Amy received the USA Hockey President’s Award in 2017 for her positive impact and continues to do wonderful things for kids and families.
Amy didn’t grow up with hockey being a part of her life. In fact, she attended her first hockey game as an adult. Amy could not be prouder of her hockey journey or her affiliation with USA Hockey. Amy sees the joy in the athletes’ eyes and the smiles on their faces when they take the ice. She sees the faces of parents pressed up against the glass filled with hope and pride. Her heart receives this gift every time she watches these athletes play hockey.
USA Hockey doesn’t just give people with disabilities an opportunity to play hockey, they showcase to the rest of the world what these athletes are capable of achieving. A person with a disability is redefined by USA Hockey as a hockey player who happens to be differently abled. They are athletes first and the focus is on what they can do. They are included and celebrated with all the hockey players of USA Hockey.
Amy suited her son Spencer, who has Down Syndrome, up for hockey for the first time when he was five years old. He thumped his chest with his fist and said, “I am a Power Ranger.” She saw how empowering that equipment and the game of hockey were for him. Amy never wanted him to lose that feeling. She knew she had to create the same opportunities for other players with disabilities.