Wednesday, February 11, 2004
DALLAS -- Longtime Dallas resident John Strader recently received the Oregon Governor's Council Mayor's Certificate -- Fitness Leadership Award at a reception in Eugene.
Strader has lived in Dallas for more than 20 years and has been active in youth sports, most notably football and baseball. He also is an electrical lineman and has donated much time and effort in projects to provide lighting for area youth sports venues.
The youth baseball complex near LaCreole Middle School is named "Strader Fields" in his honor.
"It was pretty good but unexpected of course," Strader said. "My goal is to keep the kids out of trouble. A lot of it is sportsmanship. With some of the family situations there are these days, you never know what a kid is going through. Sports gives them a chance to get involved in something and give them something they don't have at home.
"The most rewarding thing is watching the kids that I've coached graduate. On the sidelines at the (high school) football games, I know most of the guys and have coached a lot of them. A lot of them have gone on to college and played sports. It's kind of neat to keep track of them."
The Mayor's Certificate award program was created to recognize individuals who have made significant contributions in the areas of health and physical fitness.
"John Strader has been a key individual in developing sports facilities and programs for the youth of Dallas," Dallas Mayor Jim Fairchild said. "John's leadership and hard work have made it possible for Dallas kids to participate in organized and well-coached sports programs in facilities that are well-lighted and well-maintained. We owe John Strader more than we can ever repay."