In honor of its longstanding relationship with USAA and The USAA Foundation, Strikeouts For Troops™ presented its first Joe Zito Patriot Award to USAA executive, Barbara Gentry. The award is a tribute to Joe Zito, father of the nonprofit’s founder, San Francisco Giants pitcher, Barry Zito.
Mrs. Gentry is Senior Vice President of Community Affairs at USAA, as well as President of both The USAA Foundation and The USAA Educational Foundation. She received the award at a spring training ceremony and dinner in Phoenix on March 6. There were about 90 guests in attendance, including major league ballplayers and wounded military members.
“Barbara Gentry is the highest example of someone dedicated to helping others,” said Barry Zito. “She’s proven time and again that she’s selfless, compassionate and determined to make this world a better place. Her partnership with Strikeouts for Troops along with The USAA Foundation’s has meant so much to us. We look forward to continuing the wonderful relationship.”
In Keeping with the Philanthropic Spirit
As part of the award, Strikeouts for Troops is making a contribution to the charity of Mrs. Gentry’s choice. “I’ve asked that half the award go to Fisher House Foundation to help build their new ‘comfort house’ for families of injured or sick members of the military in Anchorage, Alaska,” she said, “and the other half to Haven of Hope for their work with homeless veterans in the greater San Antonio area.”
About Strikeouts For Troops
USAA and The USAA Foundation have a five-year history with Strikeouts For Troops. More than 60 professional ballplayers have signed on with SFT and donate money for each strikeout, home run or other athletic achievement to help wounded veterans that are being treated at military hospitals nationwide.
“Barry doesn’t really have a military background, so for him to put his time, energy and money into starting and keeping this organization going is very special,” said Mrs. Gentry. “He deserves a great deal of recognition. We are proud of our association with him and Strikeouts for Troops.”
USAA is the sponsor of The USAA Foundation. The USAA Foundation is a nonprofit organization and does not endorse or promote any commercial supplier, product or service.