Coale Nominated for UN Peace Award

Athletics Communications
By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma
DECEMBER 15, 2010

Dec. 15, 2010

Note: In the original story regarding a peace award nomination for OU head women’s basketball coach Sherri Coale, there were errors that depicted her as the catalyst for Haiti relief efforts.

Coach Coale was nominated for the award by Journey Church due to the culture of volunteerism adopted by her staff and players.   It was assistant coach Jan Ross who inspired the mission trip and the players’ involvement.  Coach Coale was unable to travel to Haiti due to her son’s high school graduation. Coale did not “spearhead” fundraising efforts by Journey Church as the original release had stated.

ATLANTA -- Celebrate Positive announced today that University of Oklahoma Women's Basketball Coach Sherri Coale has been nominated for the Inaugural 2010 United Nations NGO Positive Peace Awards in the Sports Coach category. This award, viewed as a 21st century peace prize, honors and recognizes individuals, businesses, athletes, sports teams, entertainers and schools around the world for their positive contributions.

The 2010 Positive Peace Award nominees are judged by the United Nations NGO (Non-Governmental Organizations) Voting Academy comprised of highly respected United Nations NGOs, such as Rotary International, Pathways to Peace, and Sister Cities International. The Voting Academy will use an established criteria of a coach's community involvement and impact on their community to determine this year's winner.

"Celebrate Positive congratulates Sherri Coale for exemplifying what giving back to the community means" said Scott Pederson, President and CEO, Celebrate Positive. "Coach Coale's positive impact goes beyond the Oklahoma community. Her concern for the international community has inspired her players and Sooner fans everywhere".  

Coale was nominated by Journey Church in Norman for her team's efforts in traveling to Port au Prince, Haiti to help serve earthquake victims.

"Coach Coale cares deeply about her players and shows concern for their development off of the basketball court", said Adam Barnett of Journey Church. "The Haiti trip is a perfect example of the kind of leadership she provides her players, and the positive impact she has on the world."

Rotary International, with over 33,000 Clubs and 1.2 million members in over 200 countries serves on the United Nations NGO Voting Academy.

"We at Rotary International are honored to serve on the voting committee for the United Nations NGO Positive Peace Awards," says RI General Secretary Ed Futa. "Every day, Rotary's 1.2 million members address the question, how do we make our world a better place? How appropriate that these awards recognize those individuals and organizations who are asking the same question and taking the necessary steps to achieve positive change in our world."

The winner of the sports categories for 2010 United Nations NGO Positive Peace Award will be announced in December.

"Sherri Coale is uniquely gifted as a leader, teacher, and mentor," said OU Vice President of Intercollegiate Athletics Programs and Director of Athletics Joe Castiglione. "Her coaching accomplishments highlighted by significant numbers of victories and championships are overwhelming, but no more so than the profound impact she has had on the lives of those she has coached.

"Sherri takes a unique interest in their personal development and I am often impressed at the way young people grow and mature under her guidance.  As a former classroom educator, she places great emphasis on academic performance and it shows in the outstanding grade point averages and graduation rates we see in her program.

"There are a number of people in our profession who talk about the development of the 'total person.'  The program developed by Sherri Coale here at the University of Oklahoma has to be amongst the greatest examples of creating an environment for that goal to be realized."

About Celebrate Positive
Celebrate Positive, in coordination with the United Nations and its non-government organizations like, Rotary International, Sister Cities International and Pathways to Peace provides a platform to recognize communities, businesses, schools, athletes and entertainers for the positive work to make a difference in the world. Celebrate Positive has created a destination website that provides inspirational news from around the world as well as efforts being made by the United Nations to promote peace globally.  For more information on Celebrate Positive or the organizations and agencies they work with, visit



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