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D.C. United Women nominated for five post season awards by United Soccer Leagues

Germantown, MD – United Soccer Leagues (USL) has nominated D.C. United Women’s team or staff members for five out of six 2011 season awards for which the first-year W-League franchise was eligible.

Officially dubbed the “2011 USL Organizational Awards”, USL will honor the teams and executives that set a standard for excellence during the 2011 USL PRO, PDL and W-League seasons at the 2011 USL Hall of Fame Banquet this Friday, December 16, in Clearwater Beach, Fla., which is held as part of the USL AGM running Thursday, December 15 through Sunday, December 18.

Below is a list of the 2011 USL W-League Organizational Awards for which United Women were nominated, along with fellow nominees.

Rookie Franchise of the Year
D.C. United Women
Dayton Dutch Lions
Fredericksburg Impact

Marketing Award
Charlotte Lady Eagles
D.C. United Women
Vancouver Whitecaps FC
Virginia Beach Piranhas

Media Award
D.C. United Women
Ottawa Fury
Pali Blues
Santa Clarita Blue Heat
Virginia Beach Piranhas

Betsy McAdams Key Grip Award*
Rita Ostin, Colorado Force
Rachel Singer, Santa Clarita Blue Heat
Diane Voice, Vancouver Whitecaps FC
Remy DuCote, NoVa Majestics & D.C. United Women

*recognizes an excellent member of a club’s staff that is not an executive with the team

Executive of the Year
Jeremy Auyer, Charlotte Lady Eagles
John Pugh, Ottawa Fury
Tim Schweitzer, NoVa Majestics & D.C. United Women

Based at the Maryland SoccerPlex Stadium in Boyds, Md., the first-year W-League franchise successfully cultivated the region’s impressive women’s soccer fan base into a strong local following with barely a month of marketing efforts leading up to the beginning of the 2011 season. For the five-game home season at the SoccerPlex, the team averaged over 800 fans per game, with 1,052 attending the season finale win over the North Jersey Valkyries.

After a slow start and some rough away trips left the Black-and-Red with just one win in their first six games, head coach Mike Jorden and assistant Cindi Harkes lead the team to four wins in a row to finish on 17 points out of 10 games with a 5-3-2 record, only four points away from an Eastern Conference playoff berth.

“As successfully as the team finished on the field, our front office and administrative staff enjoyed season-long success in the ticketing, sponsorships and administration departments,” said Chris Hummer, co-owner and general manager of D.C. United Women. “These USL Organizational Award nominations highlight those achievements.”

In addition to the invaluable backing of D.C. United’s MLS organization and Presenting Sponsor Volkswagen, Hummer – working in 2011 as Marketing and Media Director – successfully lead an effort that added a major presenting sponsor in Alarm.com along with several additional local sponsors. The front office also initiated a ticket sales campaign via LivingSocial, which saw over 600 individual and season ticket packages sold prior to opening day. That sales push was augmented by the development of a custom online ticket system, initiating youth club partnerships and utilizing email and direct marketing efforts to achieve impressive overall ticket sales results.

Though both have since moved to focus solely on their long-held Northern Virginia Majestics franchise in 2012, this year both Team Administrator Remy DuCote and General Manager Tim Schweitzer maintained the utmost level of professionalism and efficiency in managing everything from player registrations to game day operations for two teams, playing in two states. Both have been recognized for their efforts in today’s awards nominations, while Schweitzer will also be inducted into the USL Hall of Fame this weekend.

D.C. United Women are already hard at work for 2012, with plans for several Saturday night games at the SoccerPlex to showcase what promises to be a very strong roster consisting of many of the area’s best former professionals, active collegians and even future stars still playing for local clubs and high schools.

While the front office is in Clearwater Beach for the USL AGM and Hall of Fame Banquet, the technical staff will be holding winter-break tryouts for both the W-League and the new Super-20 Reserve teams at the Maryland SoccerPlex this Sunday, December 18th at both 10:00 am and 2:00 pm.