This past year The Hutcherson Flying Queens Foundation (HFQF), like other successful organizations, learned new ways of working and communicating effectively. We used email, phone calls, and Zoom extensively since we were unable to hold any in-person events due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Even with these obstacles, we were resilient AND smart enough to survive, adapt, and overcome what came our way. The reason: YOU—your continued support, both emotionally and financially—THANK YOU!
The Naismith Enshrinement and the Induction of the 1948-82 Flying Queens into the Wayland Athletics Hall of Honor introduced a new generation of Queens to Foundation activities. These two events also heightened our interest in preserving the history of Flying Queens basketball and in securing the future of Flying Queens basketball. With these interests in mind, the Foundation broadened its mission statement to include preserving the past and securing the future in addition to supporting the current Flying Queens. To preserve the past, we are talking with Wayland President Dr. Bobby Hall, Dr. Kevin Ludlum, Wayland’s vice president for Advancement, and others about a permanent Flying Queens museum exhibit. Those conversations are ongoing.
To secure the Foundation’s financial resources that support the Flying Queens, we gave more thought to our Legacy Gift program. We enlisted Cathy Wilson, former Flying Queen and Queens coach, as a volunteer consultant and member of our Advisory Council. Cathy is a Certified Financial Planner and an Accredited Investment Fiduciary. Her help in explaining the various gift options in our Legacy Gift program has been invaluable.
For the Foundation to stay active and continue supporting the Flying Queens, we needed to create a viable transition model for Foundation leadership. This model involves recruiting younger members to the Board of Directors who have skill sets needed to lead Board committees and later serve in officer roles. Current Board leaders will mentor younger Board members in the responsibilities of their respective positions. This process will be repeated when new members join the Board. Those recruited include Leanne Waddell South, Valerie Goodwin-Colbert, Sheryl Estes, Kathy Booth Loter, Rosemary Brown Bowser, Kathy Harston, and Darla Merrill. We believe this transition model will provide a blueprint for maintaining strong Foundation leadership.
This model is already paying dividends. New Board members have helped update our website and re-design our newsletter. They have helped revise our bylaws and are providing new ideas and forward thinking to all committees. They encouraged us to have membership dues to give members an opportunity to demonstrate their commitment to the Foundation.
• Posted player bios for the “Meet the 2019 Flying Queens” Facebook series
• Naismith Rings and Pendants begin arriving.
• Coach Alesha Ellis gave birth to daughter Laiken Ellis.
• The Foundation presented Coach Weese and JoAnn notebooks with players’ autobiographical stories.
• The 2019-20 Flying Queens won the SAC Tournament Championship, were SAC Co-Champions, and were the #2 seed going into the National NAIA Tournament that was cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
• Flying Queens Morgan Bennett, Kaylee Edgemon and Jenna Cooper received All-American honors. Bennett was named a CoSIDA Academic All-American. CoSIDA (College Sports Information Directors of America).
• The Foundation presented the Flying Queens players and coaches with a personalized Champion Award. The text read: “The Hutcherson Flying Queens Foundation honors the commitment you made to bring home to Wayland the NAIA National Championship. We believe you would have made it happen!”
• The Foundation provided information on Flying Queens basketball to four students from Hereford, Texas, who entered a YouTube documentary in the National History Fair Day. Their video “The Winningest Team: The Wayland Baptist Flying Queens” took first place in the Texas Women’s History category winning the prestigious Ruthe Winegarten Award.
• The Foundation asked current and former Queens to post reflections on the impact that COVID-19 had on their lives on Facebook.
• The Foundation wanted our sister Flying Queens who are women of color to know that we supported them during the difficult time following the George Floyd incident. For some that meant “taking a knee” in solidarity against brutality, injustice, and systemic racism. For others it meant kneeling in prayer for the healing of the nation.
• The Foundation promoted the June 22 ESPN2 Sports Center segment on Coach Harley Redin, which was part of their coverage on women’s sports and Title IX.
• Foundation members Dean Weese, Jill Rankin Schneider, Sheryl Estes, and Cathy Wilson were featured in a ZOOM presentation titled “Celebrating the History of Women’s Basketball in Texas.” Former Queens’ Coach Sheryl Estes helped organize the event.
• The Hutcherson Flying Queens Foundation’s Annual Golf Tournament, originally held in July but rescheduled for Sept. 21, was postponed due to the uncertain status of COVID 19 in Texas.
• The Foundation raffled off the bottle of the Ace of Spades Brut Gold Champagne given to Wayland at the 2019 Naismith Hall of Fame Induction event. Wayland President Dr. Bobby Hall presented the bottle to HFQF President Linda Price during the Hall of Honor reception at his home. The winner was Riaro Gomez of Houston, Texas.
• Two new members joined the Board: Valerie Goodwin-Colbert and Sheryl Estes.
• The Board approved Coach Alesha Ellis’ grant application for a two-year contract for the “Just Play Sports Scouting Service”.
• Coach Harley Redin died on Aug. 1; 28 days shy of his 101st birthday. The Redin family requested that memorial gifts be given to the Hutcherson Flying Queens Foundation.
• The Foundation provided written documents and set up player interviews for a limited television series being developed by K&L Productions, a Los Angeles-based film and television production company. The series tells of the creation of the most dominant team in the history of women’s college basketball — The Wayland Flying Queens! The story focuses on both the team and the coaches and advocates who led their charge, and how they paved the way for the adoption of Title IX and the growth of women’s sports.
• The Flying Queens were selected the 2020 Sooner Athletic Conference Women’s Team of Character for their performance both on and off the court.
• Flying Queen Morgan Bennett was named the 2020 SAC Female Student-Athlete of the Year and received Wayland’s Female Citizenship Award.
• Flying Queens Head Coach Alesha Ellis hired husband Andy Ellis as assistant coach. He replaces Josh Bailey who resigned after the 2019-2020 season.
• On the weekend after Labor Day, we celebrated the anniversary of the enshrinement of the 1948-1982 Flying Queens into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.
• Annie Sue Crow Inmon, our oldest living member of the Queens’ teams recognized by Naismith, died on Sept. 18, 2020.
• The Hutcherson Flying Queen Foundation revised the Foundations’ Bylaws to expand its mission statement, institute member dues, standardize board terms from Jan. 1 – Dec. 31, and expand meeting options to include electronic meetings.
• Started a Facebook series recognizing Hutcherson Flying Queen Foundation Members who have been inducted into the Wayland Baptist Athletic Hall of Honor. To date, 44 of the 107 people are Foundation Members.
• The Queens were ranked # 2 in the NAIA 2020 Women’s Basketball Coaches Preseason Top 25 poll.
• Produced and distributed the re-designed newsletter, Flying High.
• The Hutcherson Flying Queens Foundation held its annual meeting on Nov. 7 via a ZOOM call. Four new members were elected to the Board beginning in 2021: Rosemary Brown Bowser, Kathy Booth Loter, Kathy Harston, and Darla Merrill. Valerie Goodwin-Colbert and Sheryl Estes were confirmed. Barbara McAninch, Kristy Noble, and Linda Tucker were recognized for their eight years of service to the Foundation Board. All three are required to “term off” Board for 2021.
• The Queens won their first two games of the season before the remaining Fall schedule was cancelled due to COVID 19.
• A new board member orientation was held Dec. 3 via Zoom.
• The 2021 Board members met via a Zoom call on Dec. 10 and elected officers for 2021: Linda Pickens Price, president; Valerie Goodwin-Colbert, first vice president; Kathy Booth Loter, second vice president for funding/social activities; Elaine Barnes, second vice president for team support; Leanne Waddell South, second vice president for marketing and membership; Rosemary Brown Bowser, secretary; Cherri Rapp, treasurer.
• The Queens tied for #2 in the second NAIA Women’s Basketball Coaches Poll.
• Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced eligible candidates for Class of 2021. Harley Redin and Lometa Odom are candidates in the Women Veterans Committee nominations. Both were nominees in 2020, but Naismith subsequently suspended the Direct Election Categories for one year.
• 106,861: Total HFQF Facebook page views in 2020.