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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

BYB...Makin' A Comeback For The Kids

After nearly a week of a very heated, social media debate, that played out in the public eye, the Belvidere Youth Baseball organization has a new board. The vote took place last night, Tuesday November 13 at the Belvidere Community Building. Some of the same board members returned, and some are new. Despite the dramatics that lead up to this election,  I have no doubt that the voters have chosen our representatives wisely.

It is now time to step up to the plate, aim for the fences, and hit this out of the park!

Those of us that we're hoping for a change in presidency, were also hoping for a new president that would place the emphasis back on ALL of the 600+ players that take our fields every spring. It was not a secret that the majority of the voters had felt that the focus of the past year, was not beneficial to BYB as a whole. We fought hard for a change, and that is exactly what we got. Now, we need to put our money where our mouths are, and prove that we are here for the kids, and that we will do what is necessary to make sure our players develop their skills and have fun!

I have no doubt that this next year is going to be a great one. We have dedicated board members, coaches, parents, and sponsors that are going to make this upcoming season stand out among one of the best!

Below you will find our 2013 board members. Please, if you are out and about, and see any of these people,  thank them for their dedication and commitment to Belvidere Youth Baseball.



PRESIDENT                                                                        Todd Humphry
VICE PRESIDENT                                                             Rob Trimble    
TREASURER                                                                       Jason Schwebke
SECRETARY                                                                        Becki Radaha
EQUIPMENT MANAGER                                               Blaise Humphry
CONCESSIONS DIRECTOR                                           Trisha Petit
ICE CREAM SOCIAL DIRECTOR                                   Linda Kozlowski

SCHEDULING DIRECTOR                                              Rick Kitsemble
UMPIRE COORDINATOR                                              Jason Schwebke
EXECUTIVE COMMISSIONER OF BASEBALL         John fish

EXECUTIVE COMMISSIONER OF SOFTBALL         Sonny Lott
FALL LEAGUE COMMISSIONER                                  Jim Andres
PONY LEAGUE COMMISSIONER                                John Fish
BRONCO LEAGUE COMMISSIONER                         Chris Blatchford

MUSTANG BOYS COMMISSIONER                            Brett Vosburgh
PINTO BOYS COMMISSIONER                                    Rob Trimble
16U SOFTBALL COMMISSIONER                               Mike O'Donnell
14U SOFTBALL COMMISSIONER                               Mike O'Donnell
12U SOFTBALL COMMISSIONER.                              Julia Fish
10U SOFTBALL COMMISSIONER                               Steve Lambright
8U SOFTBALL COMMISSIONER                                  Dan Staton

BUILDING/GROUNDS                                                    John Ross & John Fish

I am so happy to be a part of this organization. I have never been on the board and I have never coached, but  I do have a voice and I like to think that I have made a small difference, especially over the past week. So, for all of you that do not hold an "official" position within Belvidere Youth Baseball, do not think that your opinion does not matter,  do not think that we do not need your help, and do not think that there is nothing you can do to help make our upcoming season successful. there are so many people behind the scenes that help get things accomplished, and BYB depends on our community member volunteers to make each and every year successful. It can not be done without support form you.

If you think you have something to offer or  can volunteer to help in anyway, Please contact any of the board members, or, better yet, make it a priority to attend the BYB monthly meeting on the 2nd Wednesday of each month at 7pm held inside Alpine Bank located at State and Logan.

I hope to see all of you there!

Ps If you are  BelRocker that has followed the BYB happenings via this website, please stop and say "hi" to me, because I WILL be at that meeting in December!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Saving Baseball For Future Belvidere Kids

What you are about to read is my opinion, it does not necessarily reflect the opinion of BYB as an organization nor any of the board members, although I know that many involved in BYB, coaches, parents, and yes, some board members do agree with the following statements.

BYB. Belvidere Youth Baseball was founded in 1958 in order to give boys and girls of our surrounding communities the opportunity to play America's favorite game, baseball, and of course, softball for the girls. For the past 54 years the BYB organization has succeeded in their quest.


Let me spell it out, BYB, was created for the kids, PERIOD.  BYB was not created to further anyone's personal agenda. BYB was not created to make anyone rich, make anyone famous, it was not created to get someone's kid seen by scouts or to get kids to the majors.  BYB was created simply for the love of the game and for the love of our kids. 



I am not quite sure exactly where we went wrong, but somewhere along the way, mostly in the past year, it seems as if BYB has lost it's way. I say "we" because this organization belongs to us, the community of Belvidere.  It does not belong to the BYB president, or the VP, or any of the board members. It actually belongs to the hundreds of boys and girls that participate in the program each and every year. We are the voice of those children and it seems as if we are on the verge of failing them. 


Recently, there was an email sent out by the current BYB President. Chances are, if you received that email, your family has one vote to elect 2013 board members.   


I would like to share with you a letter sent by a concerned parent in response to the BYB President's letter. PLEASE take a few moments to read this, it speaks volumes!



Hello, my name is Linda Kozlowski. I have 4 children, 3 of which are in BYB. My family has been involved in byb going on 6 years. My husband and I have both coached for byb .  Its very disappointing to me as a parent of this wonderful organization to see people use their positions on the board for their personal agendas. I have gone to several board meetings over the years and until recently was very happy with the way things were being handled. I received an email yesterday from the BYB president, the email was  very one sided. He listed names of people that have given their all to this program and now he wants to remove them from byb completely. Why you ask? Well, at the board meetings I have been at there have been some heated discussions and votes. The board consists of a group of parents and volunteers. As with any board, you as a member have the right to vote the way you want according to your opinions and beliefs.  

     
The BYB president listed the names of the people who do not agree with him and vote against him. The president would like a board that will just go along with his plans and vote with him. This is my opinion though, but this is an opinion I have come upon by being at the meetings! I have seen and heard from unhappy sponsors who feel they are not being informed about whats going on in this organization that they are giving money to. BYB has always been a community involved organization, that's why it has been around for 50+ years. In the email our president listed how he wants to remove Chris Blatchford from the board. Chris has been involved with BYB as a player, coach, umpire and board member for years! The president also listed Chris as one of the board members that are paid. Chris also umpires when he is not coaching, and as you may know BYB pays all of the umpires for their services, not just Chris.

John Ross as far as I know, has been involved with byb for 40+ years. Coaching, grounds keeping , and as a board member. John Fish has been involved for 20+ years coaching, grounds crew, and board member. Jason Schwebke has played in byb, coached, and served on the board also. Now keep in mind that these four men that the president wants to remove are involved with byb because they believe in the organization! They won't tell you about all of the hours they donate towards keeping our fields in tip top shape, or the hours spent repairing buildings, bleachers,taking out garbage, cleaning bathrooms. What about the hours they spend coaching and mentoring our children! The email  from the byb president Rich Tomman was very one sided, to me it seemed like a witch hunt to be perfectly honest with you. Just because they don't share the same views as Rich.... My boys have had Chris Blatchford as a coach, he has made a lasting impression on them! In the presidents email he also stated that he feels these 4 men" have a personal ownership mentality of the organization". Good! I feel its very important to have people involved that put their heart and soul into something!  We as parents need to become more involved in our kids time spent with Belvidere Youth Baseball. . That's what byb is about, OUR KIDS

    
Think back to when you take your kids to the byb fields, remember looking at the fields,bleachers, etc. Someone had to show up very early on their own time to make the facility clean, and safe for our kids. If you have questions or concerns just ask any of these gentlemen! They will answer your questions, they are here for the kids, not for selfish reasons. I feel my children are very lucky to be involved in Belvidere youth Baseball, and to have a chance to be coached and taught by these fine men.  I have written this letter to give a little insight to those who are only hearing one side of this situation, and to those who have no idea this is even happening. I'm not telling you who to vote for on the 13th of November.  My wish is to see all parents show up and vote with their children's best interest in mind.  I have expressed my opinions here, I felt the need to defend these gentlemen because I've seen all of them working hard for the Belvidere Youth Baseball Organization! And please know I'm not forgetting all of the other parents who coach and volunteer  for BYB. I appreciate them all! I just felt the need to defend the ones who are being singled out by the current president, I could not sit by and watch this anymore.
      
So with that being said, voting is Tuesday November 13th, at 7:00 pm . At the Community building in Belvidere. Please arrive early, as there may be a lot of people. This is so important to this organization, and our kids! There is 1 - person per family allowed to vote, so please show your support!  
                                                               
               Thank you, Linda Kozlowski     


As you can see there are two sides to every story. It is a shame when someone that is entrusted with an organization as important as this one is, is  responsible for the dissension among the wonderful people that volunteer their time, money, and efforts in order to simply make our kids happy. 

Deceit and underhanded dealings are what have caused this riff within our organization. I think enough is enough. We should NOT tolerate this behavior any longer!

PLEASE take responsibility and make your voice heard! It is time to make a change and it starts with your vote on Tuesday night!

Our annual voter's meeting is this Tuesday November 13 2012 at the Community Building.

Please be there by 6:30 for registration. YOUR VOTE IS IMPORTANT!