FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – The Northern Arizona University Athletics Department has once again made community service a vital part of the Lumberjack experience. NAU student-athletes and staff continue to make their imprint in the Flagstaff community and beyond as the athletes have performed a record 5,428 hours of total community service hours breaking last year’s mark of 5,327. In addition, the Lumberjack staff registered 1,115 community service hours to make it a department-wide effort.
“Taking time to give back to Flagstaff and beyond is a priority for NAU Athletics administrators, coaches and student-athletes,” said Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics Dr. Lisa Campos. “It is a way to say thank you for the support we receive from the community, and an opportunity for us to help make a positive impact. We continually look for ways to ‘Inspire Northern Arizona’ and I am proud of the many hours our program has committed to this endeavor.”
NAU’s commitment to giving back has continually increased every year as the total amount of community service hours since the 2011-12 school year has grown by nearly 2,000 hours.
The Lumberjacks won a total of seven conference championships this year, proving that they are winners in competition and in the community. Every year NAU student-athletes participate in Welcome Back Jacks; as they help incoming freshmen move into the dorms. It doesn’t end there as community service projects stretch from Red Ribbon Week, to Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service to National Girls & Women in Sports Day. Student-Athlete for a Day was another success, while the Lumberjacks got the Flagstaff United School District heavily involved with the athletics department for various events in the school’s and on the NAU campus.
Jordan Denesik from the women’s tennis team and Caleb Hoover from the men’s cross country and track & field programs were voted this year’s Jacks That Give Back.
Denesik, a senior from Anthem, Ariz., completed over 152 hours of community service including work outside the department volunteering with Kinsey Elementary, Knoles Assembly, Welcome Back Jacks, Red Ribbon Week, Trick-Or-Treat at the Dome, Toys For Tots, MLK Jr. Day of Service, and many other services.
Caleb Hoover, a senior from Joplin, Mo., performed over 31 hours of service in the community including assisting with MLK Jr. Day of Service, Cub Scout Field Day, Glory Field Ministry, and the Flagstaff Family Food Center.