Courtesy of Maryland Eastern Shore Athletics
PRINCESS ANNE, Md. – Last month, former Maryland Eastern Shore Women’s Basketball graduate assistant coach Richard Ashley received the Kind to Kids Outstanding Achievement Award for his dedication, courage, and leadership to provide inspiration to kids in need. The ceremony took place in Wilmington, Delaware.
“To be honest, it was a surreal feeling,” said Ashley. “To receive a standing ovation meant a lot, especially to my family and I. When I was walking to the stage I was saying in my head, ‘See what hard work gets you’.”
For the past two years, Ashley has served as a Life Skills Instructor where he teaches life lessons to high school adolescents in a 10-week course. The class meets once a week to discuss numerous topics.
“I want kids to know that you can make it if you are willing to work hard,” Ashley stated. “They must understand that their vision is not meant for everyone to be a part of so strive to be different.”
Ashley, also known to the Hawk family as “Magic,” spent seven seasons under Coach Fred Batchelor in various capacities. In 2008, the New Castle, Delaware native earned his degree from Maryland Eastern Shore.
“I greatly appreciate my university,” said Ashley. “I received my education at Maryland Eastern Shore, which has been a blessing because it has opened so many doors. I want to thank the athletic department for giving me the opportunity to coach,”
Coach Batchelor and the women’s basketball program were very proud of Magic’s achievement.
“Lady Hawk Nation is extremely proud of Magic,” said Batchelor. “I am encouraged by him and have had the opportunity to serve in his development as a consummate professional. We continue to expect big things from our ‘Magic’ man.”
From 2006-08, Ashley joined the staff as a student assistant and a strength and conditioning assistant coach before becoming the team’s graduate assistant.
“Coach Batchelor and Coach [Revonda] Whitley are a great mentors, friends, and coaches,” Ashley explained. “They always said to find a way to give back. The coaching staff help me realize to see the big picture.”
Since Maryland Eastern Shore, Ashley has coached at Delaware Tech-Stanton and Salem Community College where he assisted both programs to postseason play.
“Richard represents all that is powerful in the future leaders of this next generation,” Batchelor added. “He is passionate, dedicated and committed to helping youngsters that remind him of himself. He has overcame the odds to become a successful, productive human being.”
For more than five years, Kind to Kids has served over 10,000 children in foster care and poverty. Each day, children who are victims of child abuse and neglect enter the foster care system.
Kind to Kids is working to get educational programs, support services and supplies to the children to help them through these difficult times in their young lives. The organization helps the 700 children in Delaware’s foster care system, 50,000 children in poverty and at-risk teens.
To learn more about Kind to Kids, please visit their website www.kindtokids.org.